People feel better about themselves and their lives, defying the international stereotype of Siberia.
He describes a mission to Moscow as the Soviet Union was imploding when he was given access to a document the authorities had earlier claimed did not exist
Marking the centenary of the Paris premiere of the 'The Rite of Spring', the ballet plays for two nights in Novosibirsk.
He chose to become a hermit for six months on the shore of Lake Baikal in deep winter, miles from the nearest town and city.
What I wasn't expecting was just how beautiful everything looked under the sparkling white blanket of snow.
The flame warms Siberia and even takes a dip in Lake Baikal en route to the Sochi Winter Games.
It should be called the 'Pacific region', he suggests.